The blog is not finished! But after the Theft (yes, capital letters), the want/need to update the blog took second fiddle to dealing with the Theft and just finishing the trip sans computer. Since being home, it's been hard to get that motivation to complete it. But I will. Ever so slowly. Please be patient!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Getting Over The Theft

It’s really sad to admit, but admit it I will, but the day after the theft of my laptop and passport, I was not in the best of moods. I was downright depressed. For two days I did nothing but wander over to the McDonald’s where the theft happened (on the insane notion that I could change things back) or stay in the hostel watching old movies. I was very close to just quitting the trip, that’s how horrible I felt. Of course, I didn’t, and couldn’t do that. I had no passport after all.
But somehow I snapped out of it. I think it was mainly when my aunt told me to stop whining. She has a way with words at times.
Plus, I almost caught myself watching this
One of the first things I did was get Passport Canada to email me the new forms I would have to fill out to get a new passport. From my discussions with them it became clear that I would only be allowed to hand in that application at the High Commission in Canberra, a city I had had no plans of visiting in the first place as it was a bit out of the way.
In my mothers words, “When you need a passport overseas, they have you by the balls.” According to the Passport Canada website, a standard 24-page passport should cost me CDN$100. The fee that the High Commission of Canada required me to pay: AUS$110. But, you can’t argue because you need your passport. Next on the list, you need photos done in a specific way. In the email I got from the High Commission, they give a list of “approved photographers that have specified that they can print approved photos.” If I had been in my right mind and not completely stressed, I wouldn’t have settled for this “approved” photographer. But because I did, I ended up spending AUS$50 for photos which I didn’t even get (the studio ended up being closed or “out of the office” each time I went to pick the photos up). I gave up on those, went to a Kodak shop, and got them done for $17. I hoped like hell that they would be ok.
In the midst of all this, I managed to get out of moping around the hostel (almost three full days of said moping) and got out to do stuff. It started slow at first, with just wandering around the downtown of the city, doing some geocaching, getting my mind off things.
And taking photos of pretty buildingsIMG_1651
A friend of Steve’s, Hammond and his roommate Fiona even had me over a couple times for board games. That was actually great fun. We ended up playing Settler’s of Catan and watching the pilot episode of a new Australian show about gay geeks. Think Big Bang Theory but for the gays.

On the Friday, I met a guy whom I had been chatting with online and we went to the Woodlands Park. This park is not easy to get to unless you have your own vehicle, though it is possible with the bus that runs past the airport. It just takes forever. Regardless, the day was the first day that week that I did something touristy.
The Woodlands Park is a huge, 700 hectares, park that encompasses many trails and historic farmsteads. There was a huge 100+ geocaching “Power Trail” that I was hoping to go after and had been told that this was the place to see wild kangaroos. Of course, the local, Matt, was a little dubious of that claim.
At least for the first half hour of our walk.
The park, being so close to the airport, also had a great view of incoming aircraft.
Now here’s the thing about Australia. Pretty much everything is poisonous. Well, ok, not everything. But enough that I wasn’t as adventurous in going into grass as I normally would be. I psyched myself out that under every rock or on every tree was some super poisonous snake or spider waiting to pounce out at me. Of course, that only meant my geocaching was slower than usual.
So many places for the poison to lurkIMG_0993
The whole days walk was quite nice and seeing the wild kangaroos was a definite highlight. And it marked the moment that my mood kinda started to turn around a little. While the depression was still there, I was resigning myself to the realities of my situation and realizing that, regardless of what happened, I could still travel and enjoy myself.


  1. Sad about the passport but it's gotten you out and perhaps doing more than what was on your 'list' to-do.

    I've played Settler’s of Catan - it can be really cut throat. Good fun though.

    Stay on the sunny side. No point worry about what's beyond your control (ex: other people's actions).

  2. Goodness Corey - are you and I in some parallel universe or something?

    I didn't know you were in Oz - I was just there for 3 weeks myself (and yes, I too did a spot of geocaching of course - especially memorable, the Earthcache at Uluru).

    Furthermore... though not my laptop and passport (that, along with everything else, credit cards, money, and even my GPSr, stolen in Costa Rica many moons ago, so I know your pain).

    BUT... just last week, indeed, at the very tail-end of my Oz trip, I too was robbed of my entire largest (a small wheely backpack) bag - by a xe om (motorbike taxi) driver right here in Vietnam.

    Fortunately all my valuables (netbook, Kindle, iPhone, camera, credit cards, passport, et al) were in my rucksack and fannypack on my person. But still... (i.e. all my cords, chargers, etc. were in the wheeley so I had to replace all, along with losing all my travel clothes, towel, binocs, water filter, etc.

    No fun. But look at it this way: You, yourself are still all in one piece, and that's the bottom-line important thing.

    In short - check out my latest TravelnLass blog post (ROBBED in Vietnam!) as it might help cheer you up.

    Oh and... stop following me around in a parallel universe! ;)